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Bathrobe Reflections.

Snow day! A whopping half inch has yielded so much excitement in this house. Big plans are being constructed to sled, skim board, and mountain bike through the wintery-mix. "It's gonna be EPIC" declared all. We'll see how long this excitement lasts as the temperature increases, anti-climatically melting away our good fun.

In the meantime, back to our good fun. It's not even 9 am and the conversations themselves have been EPIC up in here. Highlights: 1) Robyn, do you think I should play football? 2) Do you think I can become a pro wrestler? 3) I'm going out there in my swimming trunks. What do you think? 4) Mommy, where's my snowboarding helmet? I'm gonna tear it up! 5) Robyn, I have a funny story to tell you about the police...

Now that last one. It's a funny thing about kids. It's a funny thing about a limited memory. The past becomes anything you'd like it to be, as demonstrated by Justin recounting a story of the police coming to his house to check out his shorts. "And then they were going to arrest my parents because I wore shorts. Can you believe that? Who does that? My mom was going to kick their ass." The part he left out or never understood was that he was a good thirty pounds underweight for his age, his shorts were ill fitting and dirty, his shoes were barely intact, and something was clearly amiss. He no longer remembers being bullied at school or going hungry. He no longer remembers the fighting. Instead, he remembers a family who would nobly take on the police for him and let him wear shorts when he wanted to.

Clean slate. I'll take it.

Letting go becomes such an adult preoccupation. As we grow older, we realize just how much our past experiences, especially the more traumatic ones, inform our present choices and opinions. It's not such a bad thing. Best case, these memories help protect us from future harm. Worst case, they have a way of clouding clarity and creating unnecessary limitations. We carry so much with us. All of us. We are not alone in this way. So how to reclaim time, space, and peace of mind for ourselves? We don't have the luxury of Justin's inability to remember (he gets to be a rock star in his mind every day). But we do have the luxury to reflect--acknowledging (when we can) memories without judgement (the "yeah, so that happened" technique) and recognizing that we can do some re-writing...just because of x, doesn't necessarily mean y. It might mean y, but hell, it might let's see what's possible, shall we? Easier said than done, but I keep trying. As a parent and also as a friend, I hope that I can help create new adventures and new memories that help with the re-writing--wait, strike that "re-". Writing the next page, the next chapter of the life that we truly want and deserve to live.

And for the record because he will not remember tomorrow, I agreed to football, but becoming a pro wrestler may be a stretch. And Justin, put your pants on! And Justin and Justin and Justin, says the whisper in my head, I love you and love you and love you.

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